Zebra mussels confirmed in Kandiyohi County’s George Lake

Found on dock being removed from water

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has confirmed zebra mussels in George Lake, near Spicer in Kandiyohi County. 

A lake property owner contacted the DNR when he found two zebra mussels on a dock he was removing from the lake. A neighbor reported a single zebra mussel on another dock nearby.

DNR invasive species specialists did not find any other zebra mussels during a search of that section of the lake. The DNR will consider whether to also add Nest Lake to the infested waters list, because it is connected to George Lake.

Zebra mussels are frequently confirmed when docks and lifts are being removed from lakes at the end of the season. Look on the posts, wheels and underwater support bars of docks and lifts, as well as any parts of boats, pontoons and rafts that may have been submerged in water for an extended period.

Minnesota law requires that docks and lifts be allowed to dry for at least 21 days before being placed in another body of water, whether aquatic invasive species are present or not.

Whether or not a lake is listed as infested, Minnesota law requires boaters and anglers to:

  • Clean watercraft of aquatic plants and prohibited invasive species.
  • Drain all water by removing drain plugs and keeping them out during transport.
  • Dispose of unwanted bait in the trash.

Some invasive species are small and difficult to see at the access. To remove or kill them, take one or more of the following precautions before moving to another waterbody, especially after leaving infested waters:

  • Spray with high-pressure water.
  • Rinse with very hot water (120 degrees Fahrenheit for at least two minutes or 140 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 10 seconds).
  • Dry for at least five days.

Zebra mussels can compete with native species for food and habitat, cut the feet of swimmers, reduce the performance of boat motors, and cause expensive damage to water intake pipes.

People should contact an area DNR aquatic invasive species specialist if they think they have found zebra mussels or any other invasive species that has not already been confirmed in a lake.

More information is available at mndnr.gov/ais.